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Chanda Cuckler jumps a hurdle during the second heat of the women's 100 meter hurdles during the 2016 All-Ohio Track & Field Championship. Cuckler placed third with a time of 14.29. (FILE)

Track and Field: Bobcats finish well despite crowded field at Youngstown State Invitational

Ohio battled a crowded field of 20 colleges in the Youngstown State Invitational on Friday and came away with multiple high finishes.

Ohio went up against Ashland, Cedarville, Ohio Dominican, Pittsburgh, Robert Morris, Slippery Rock and host Youngstown State, amongst others, in what was the most crowded field the Bobcats have seen this season.

Olivia Mayfield finished third in the long jump with a jump of 5.40 meters. With this finish, Mayfield has finished in the top three of this event in every meet Ohio has had this season.

Taylor Smith and Avery Kerns both turned in jumps of 1.55 meters in the high jump that earned Smith a fifth place finish and Kerns a tenth place finish.

Gaza Odunaiya finished third in the weight throws with a throw of 16.40 meters, while teammates Emma Ryan, with a throw of 16.27 meters, and Cassidy Cleland, with a throw of 15.25 meters, came in fourth and fifth respectively.

The Bobcats also got some strong performances by the runners in the 400-meter dash with Emily Deering finishing eighth with a time of 59.33, Erin Stewart finishing ninth with a time of 59.40 and Gracie Huffman rounding out the top ten with a time of 59.44.

The Ohio ‘A’ relay team came in third on Friday in 4x400 relay with a time of 3:59.10. That relay team, consisting of Deering, Stewart, Huffman and Marissa Handelhas, finished in the top-five of every meet this season.

The 800-meter run also had a strong showing from the Bobcats with Katlyn Logan coming in eighth place with a time of 2:21.49 and Rebekah Markovitz finishing 14th with a time of 2:21.76.

Competing against athletes from 20 other colleges certainly made things difficult for the Bobcats, but having multiple high finishes across the events will help the confidence of this team.

Ohio will be back in action on Jan. 27 and 28 in the Thundering Herd Open at Marshall.


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